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The book's action consists of conversation - mainly the lovers talking to each other before and after making love. That dialogue - sharp, rich, playful, inquiring, "moving", as Hermione Lee writes, "on a scale of pain from furious bafflement to stoic gaiety" - is nearly all there is to this audiobook, and all there needs to be.
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By Darwin8u on 05-08-18
How could you be humiliated by something that isn't so? It is not myself. It is far from myself--it is a play, it's a game, it is an impersonation of myself! Me ventriloquizing myself. Or maybe it's more easily grasped the other way around--everything here is falsified except me. Maybe it's both. But both ways or either way, what it adds up to, honey, is homo ludens!"
- Philip Roth, Deception
Roth is experimenting with dialogue. Think of this book as the pre- and post- coital conversations between a man and his mistress, interspersed with dialogues with other women and his wife. The narrator is named Philip Roth, just to confuse things (the first time Roth uses his own name and not some stand-in like Portnoy, Kepesh, or Zuckerman) even more. To complicate matters, Roth also throws in a lot of REAL accounts (trips to Czechoslovakia, etc) that most certainly are more true than fiction. He pushes the boundaries of fiction to the point where the snake indeed eats the tail of the snake. I'm just not sure if the head is fiction or the tail. And I'm sure Roth (both the ficitional Roth and the real) would have it no other way.
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